Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Getting things done with a Bullet Journal and the Midori notebook system

I've been using elements of the GTD approach for some time; for me this meant dealing with the quick tasks and sorting emails before 10.00 am and then trying to get on with the intended job for the day.
I worked from an A5 filofax with weekly planning sheets for task lists, lots of sections within each of my projects, and lots of post-its.
But though the FF is made of a dark brown leather that is lovely to handle, it is bulky and so doesn't go everywhere with me. Natalie and I frequently talk about stationery, she had shown me her Midori notebook a few months ago. Tall and slim, the pages seemed too narrow and I wasn't convinced.  But the FF really is filling up and too big, even for someone who lugs a Trakke bag rather than a girly handbag.
This weekend N also pointed me in the direction of the Bullet Journal. This echoed with much that I was already doing, and made so much sense.  And then she made the killer comment - 'of course a Midori Notebook can also be used landscape'.
And that was it - I went to bed thinking of how I would use Midori notebooks, and woke up to a Sunday morning with no way of acquiring any of the bits for my new highly productive system for several days.
But N doesn't let things lie. That very morning she made a prototype Midori-style notebook cover - with pockets. I'll let her tell you about that, on her blog.
It is made of lovely soft black leather, with red stitching.

It will have red elastics soon, just waiting for them to arrive from our Sunday order.
Back home on Sunday evening I had to make a notebook, so that I could start using it straightaway.

For Bullet Journal fans, there is a month plan with tasks; 

A week plan - using the landscape layout.

And a daily task list - where I have taken on board the idea of a 'closed list' from Tim Sprosen, only do what is on today's list, add other thing to the long list!

It's only the end of day two, but it is good so far.

If you would like a RedStitch journal too, keep an eye on Natalie Fergie's website, she'll be making more as the feedback on the prototypes comes in.

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Family history

As a child I used to love walking round graveyards looking at the names, wondering about the large number of children who died so young, and looking for names I might know.
S, our daughter, has been studying our family history for some time. She has found out a huge amount, mostly  via the web.
Today we visited a large Swedish retailer near Leeds.
S suggested we did a recce in the area as she knew we had distant relatives in the parish where said retailer lies.
So after purchasing a few bits and bobs, but no tea lights, we went to look for the parish church. There is a huge cemetery, rather overgrown but with many Victorian graves. Armed with a list of surnames we began a somewhat random walk through the area. I called out surnames, she generally said 'no', but occasionally said 'thats on the list' and took photos.
Just as we were tiring I looked at one stone with the names of  many people in the same family, and said 'did you say Middlebrook was a key name?'  Yes it was, and over she came to look at this.

A quick look at the family tree verified that all the people named on this stone are related to us through my paternal grandfather! And there were a number of children who died when under one year old.

Quite emotional.